Workplace trends and the rise of 'Returnships'


2 Days ago

With each new year comes a new buzzword, and for 2018 that word is ‘returnships’.

Although not a new term (it was coined by Goldman Sachs over ten years’ ago), it’s starting to gain interest, least of all because the government has given a £5 million boost to its returnship initiative, to help women get back to work.

For those new to the term, returnships were created to help ease professionals back to the work after taking time out to have children. Widely considered as ‘internships for parents’ they offer fixed paid placements within companies. With training and mentorship available, they are especially useful for parents that have lost their confidence, or spent considerable time out of work.

In a recent study by Staffing Industry Analysis, more than three-quarters of workers said they would be more inclined to join a company that offered such placements. Expect it to be one of the big trends of the year.

1. Trend Watch

But returnships aren’t the only trend for the year ahead. There’s a number of other notable changes happening in the industry.

We’ve rounded up a few of the other areas you can expect to hear more about in 2018:

  • Addressing the gender pay-gap

    Already in the first week of 2018, research came out to highlight companies that still have gender pay-gap discrepancies. This naming and shaming of organisations continues to be a hot topic, putting pressure on businesses to ensure they are meeting equality standards.

  • Short-term employment

    The notion that a ‘job is for life’ has long gone. Today nearly half of workers believe that it’s acceptable to leave a job after less than a year*. This is particularly prominent with millennials, indicating that the next generation is helping to drive change for good.

  • Flexible Working

    It cuts overhead costs, can increase productivity and allows for a more fluid workforce - particularly helpful for working families. Working from home continues to be an issue that employers need to consider. However, to date, less than a third* of UK professionals have the opportunity to work from home. This is set to rise, with demand for a flexible approach to working hours.

  • Workplace wellbeing

    The emphasis on mental health and wellbeing took pride of place last year, with endorsement from celebrities, royals and public figureheads. And companies took note of the impact of workplace stress. Acknowledging that a happy workforce is a productive workforce, the quest for a greater work-life balance has become a “boardroom priority” according to Marketing Week.

    These are just some of the workplace trends on the horizon for 2018, helping to progress the industry and create a more receptive workplace for return-to-work parents. For the latest job opportunities, to find companies offering returnships, or to connect with other likeminded Mothers, visit

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